SBUK response to the Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) report

By August 21, 2019

Struan Stevenson, Chief Executive of Scottish Business UK said:

“Year after year the GERS figures provide a reality check on the financial case for Scottish independence while underlining the continued value of the Union dividend that sustains the health of our economy. If she really plans to hold another referendum in the near future, the First Minister must explain how she hopes to tackle a vast net fiscal deficit after independence without resorting either to huge tax rises or commensurate public spending cuts in year one. Having read the proposals of her much-vaunted Growth Commission last year, we suspect she simply can’t and won’t bother to try.

“And while we note and welcome the continued positive performance in the public finances, thanks in part to increased North Sea activity, it’s too little too late to provide the kind of consistent boon to revenues that supporters of independence will have hoped for.

“Before we hear any more talk of timetables for a second independence referendum with Brexit as a flimsy pretext, Scottish businesses are owed a full and convincing explanation of how adding future chaos to the present confusion can be anything more than a political gamble that our economy can’t afford the First Minister to make.”